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Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Exposure to 1800MHz Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Radiation Induces Oxidative DNA Base Damage in a Mouse Spermatocyte-Derived Cell Line.

Published in: Toxicol Lett 2013; 218 (1): 2-9

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To examine whether exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields causes DNA damage in male murine germ cells.
Background/further details: Two experiments were performed. In the first experiment, the dose-related effects were examined: 1.) negative control, 2.) positive control (addition of H2O2), 3.) exposure at specific absorption rate 1 W/kg, 4.) specific absorption rate 2 W/kg and 5.) specific absorption rate 4 W/kg. In the second experiment, the role of oxidative stress was determined: 1.) sham exposure, 2.) sham exposure + alpha-tocopherol, 3.) radiofrequency exposure (4 W/kg) and 4.) radiofrequency exposure (4 W/kg) + alpha-tocopherol.
The experiments were repeated thrice.

Endpoint

Exposure

Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: pulsed
Exposure duration: intermittent (5 min on, 10 min off) for 24 hours
Exposure 2: 1,800 MHz
Exposure duration: intermittent (5 min on, 10 min off) for 24 hours
Exposure 3: 1,800 MHz
Exposure duration: intermittent (5 min on, 10 min off) for 24 hours
Exposure 1
Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration intermittent (5 min on, 10 min off) for 24 hours
Modulation
Modulation type pulsed
Additional info GSM-Talk signal
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Chamber cells exposed in Petri dishes; 6 Petri dishes simultaneously
Setup two rectangular waveguides; one waveguide used for exposures, other waveguide used for sham exposures; both waveguides were placed inside a CO2 incubator
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 1 W/kg - measured - -
Exposure 2
Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration intermittent (5 min on, 10 min off) for 24 hours
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 2 W/kg - measured - -
Exposure 3
Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration intermittent (5 min on, 10 min off) for 24 hours
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 4 W/kg - measured - -
Reference articles
  • Franzellitti S et al. (2010): Transient DNA damage induced by high-frequency electromagnetic fields (GSM 1.8GHz) in the human trophoblast HTR-8/SVneo cell line evaluated with the alkaline comet assay.
Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated material:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

The alkaline comet assay showed no significant DNA damage in any of the groups. However, using the modified comet assay, a significant DNA damage in the 4 W/kg (but not at 1 W/kg and 2 W/kg) exposed cell cultures was found in comparison to the sham exposed cell cultures. The mean fluorescence intensity of 8-oxoguanine was significantly higher in the 4 W/kg (but not at 1 W/kg and 2 W/kg) exposed cultures than in the sham exposed cultures. In the 4 W/kg and 2 W/kg (but not at 1/W/kg) exposed cultures, the level of reactive oxygen species was significantly increased compared to the sham exposed cell cultures. All the effects were blocked by an addition of alpha-tocopherol (only tested with a specific absorption rate of 4 W/kg).
The authors conclude that exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields causes a DNA damage in male germ cells via oxidative stress.
Study character:

Study funded by

  • National Basic Research Program of China
  • National Natural Science Foundation (NSFC), China

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